A Factory Working, College Grad Getting Out of Debt

A Raindrop – Cashing in on Loyalty Points

I’ve told you all before that I was working at a convenience store before I had to quit and ended up getting unemployment.  What you might not know, is that while I worked there for the six short months, I spent a lot of money while I was there.  I’m not kidding. It was good business practice that I purchased my gas while I worked at a gas station, common sense right?  Not to mention job security as well.  Well I also would end up having a meal on the run (literally as I usually tended to keep working and grabbing a bite when I could… if I could, ending up in lots of cold dinners) as well enabling my addiction to Arnold Palmer’s Half & Half Pink Lemonade Tea.

Well thankfully, that convenience store chain had a loyalty program.  And that loyalty program has come in handy now.  See, while I was working, I would always make sure that I used my loyalty card no matter what.  I would also shop right and make sure that I bought items that would get me either double points or even 500 bonus points a purchase.  I would load $150 or so on a gift card at a time and would make that my monthly budget on food and gas while I worked, and this got me a TON of points just by loading the money on the cards.. Sometimes they offered 10 cents off the gallon with a minimum purchase, and combining that with my bonus point items, I would end up getting a lot of points and good money off my gas.  My points were hidden away, and I never cashed them.  I figured that I would wait for the big prizes… like the $200 gas card.

I was close.. but not that close over a six month run with the company.  Instead, I was able to garner enough points so that I could cash in for one $50 fuel card and one $25 gift card that could also be used on fuel.  Since I rarely go out, I haven’t had to buy gas since January.  I technically didn’t need to get gas when I did last week either.. however since I was on my way to town for an unemployment workshop, I figured I would stop, fuel up, cash in my points, try the new breakfast sandwich and get a bottle of water (both of which were free with the monthly newsletter promotions that I get in my email). It worked perfectly.

I still have just under $50 on a gift card because I spent $26.75 on gas to fill up my tank before it went up forty cents.  I figured I might as well take the bait since I wouldn’t be driving much again.  Right now I’m ending up only having to fill up every two months as I try to correlate my needs with people who live with me or when my guy comes up to see me and we run errands together.  I’ve saved a lot, and although I given out $18 total in gas money to my guy and my brother for helping me out over the past four months, that’s still cheaper than the $60 a week on gas I was paying while I was employed.

How do you use your loyalty card programs?  

Count those Raindrops!



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